zackandmiridvdWriter/Director Kevin Smith has really done wonders bringing us some of the best comedies to be released in years. While some of his comedies haven’t been well received, his most smart and quirky ones have to be ‘Clerks’, ‘Mallrats’, ‘Chasing Amy’, and ‘Clerks II’. While the rest of his films haven’t been bad, they haven’t been groundbreaking either. One of the reasons is that they became an over bloated mess with star power and cameos. In his latest film, Kevin Smith brings things down a notch with the amount of characters on screen, but raises the bar on the content. The film wasn’t successful in theaters, but I think that this is a film that can give Smith a nice little resurgence.

The title of the film is enough to really send someone’s brain spinning, considering that stores like Wal-Mart and Target are just titling it ‘Zack and Miri’. I am not too sure if that is a wise choice either since people may pick this film up not knowing what it is about. Looking at the title myself upon seeing the theatrical trailer, I couldn’t believe that a film like this was going to be released nationwide. The more I read, it didn’t sound so bad by the name alone.

The story of the film centers around two very good friends, Zack (Seth Rogan) and Miri (Elizabeth Banks). They have been friends since they could remember and also live together in a rundown apartment complex. They are close friends that never did the deed together and have always kept their relationship on a friendship level, even though Zack has made many comments in the past. Zack works at a coffee shop where he doesn’t like his job and the money isn’t flowing in like he would like. Things are looking grim for both Zack and Miri from a financial standpoint when their water gets shutoff.

One day at the coffee shop, they begin discussing their upcoming ten year High School reunion. They had no intentions on attending, but then it becomes a joke to go see how other losers turned out. It is the night of the reunion as we see both of them mingling with others. Miri sees her old classmate Bobby Long (Brandon Routh) whom she had a crush on in High School. Miri begins flirting with Bobby, even though he doesn’t realize it. While this is going on, Zack runs into a guy named Brandon (Justin Long) that never attended the high school. He begins to tell Zack that he is an actor in films only starring other males. Zack breaks the news to Miri as she is allover Bobby that he doesn’t like women. They head back home after an interesting evening.

Their troubles become worse once the power gets shutoff next. They end up bringing in a barrel from outside lighting a fire to keep them warm. Then the bulb in Zack’s head lights up, telling Miri that they need to make a porno as both Brandon and Bobby have inspired him. Zack and Miri go back and forth that this is so wrong when Miri doesn’t want to have sex with him risking their friendship. They have no choice considering that they are close to being thrown out into the street.

I actually enjoyed this film quite a bit and it still goes to show that Kevin Smith can churn out some great comedies. With an excellent cast involving Seth Rogan, Elizabeth Banks, Craig Robinson, Jason Mewes, Craig Robinson, and Jeff Anderson you will laugh from start to finish. Then add a current and former adult stars, Katie Morgan and Traci Lords into the mix for one fun filled movie viewing. While the content can be offensive, this is one comedy still worth watching, especially if you are a fan of Kevin Smith. He turns it up a notch here with the material, but underneath it is still a very good Smith film.
Movie Content: 4.5/5


Print/Audio Quality

The print is presented in a 1.85:1 aspect ratio. I found this print to be rather eye pleasing with vibrant colors. Fleshtones are very natural and accurate, considering that we see a few bare necessities throughout. Black levels are solid throughout. The image was also sharp with excellent details for DVD. There is a  grain throughout the print which is a bit stronger on the DVD.
Video Quality: 4/5

The audio is presented in Dolby Digital 5.1 mix. This film is dialogue driven like every Kevin Smith film. Dialogue was clean through the center channel with a nice degree of depth. I never had to raise or lower the volume to make out what was being said. The soundfield does get a few effects into play, but nothing major. The soundtrack takes advantage of the soundfield with audio also lightly pouring through the rears. I found this to be more of a front heavy experience due to the type of film.
Audio Quality: 4/5


Special Features

  • Popcorn Porn: The Making of Zack and Miri – your typical making of featurette on the film, and a very entertaining one.
  • Deleted Scenes – WOW! This is a lot of deleted scenes and is almost like a whole another movie. I guess Smith was trying to outdo himself with ‘Dogma’s’ deleted scenes.
  • Money Shots Webisodes
  • Comic Con 2008 – I once attended one of these live here in Chicago when Smith was on a panel for Clerks, this is just plain out great watching the cast talk about the film.
  • Gang Bang: Outtakes, Ad-libs and Bloopers – a very hilarious set of outtakes and bloopers.
  • Seth Vs. Justin: Battle For Improvisational Supremacy

The deleted scenes alone will amaze you with the 1 ½ hours worth of content.
Special Features: 4/5

Final Word

‘Zack and Miri Make A Porno’ is Kevin Smith’s edgiest film yet. I would highly recommend this film as its hilarious from start to finish. Some may want to rent this first though due to the content material which could come off offensive.
Overall Rating: 4/5